Some Rough thoughts for this Friday's Football Team Mass Homily...
What shall I say ?
The readings speak about St. Paul's struggle with sin and the Gospel reminds us to be aware of the signs of the times... Here's the link for the readings
Football is a game made up of rules.... If you want to play you have to pay attention to the rules of the game. The rules aren't voted on, the players can't get together before a game and allow clipping or face mask or roughing the kicker. The rules come from above If you don't follow the rules there are penalties... Football proves that rules are necessary... without them there could be not game everyone would do their own thing with no regard for anyone else. When everyone follows the rules the game is so much better and safe.
Who makes the rules of life ?
Where do they come from?
Catholic believe that the rules come from God and the nature (natural law) that he has given us.
We don't vote on them
We don't decide what is right and wrong
God's law is not the result of a consensus or some consultation.
God's Laws are incredible gifts from God because they protect us.
They show us how to live and love
They are the easy way out because they preserve us from endless trial and error.
Every generation is not stuck finding its' own way.
God's Laws are like beacons in the dark which guide us home.
We learn them from our own reflection, the people who have lived before us and God's own self revelation.
People and God's Law
Some people just don't know God's law. They have never heard it. They have never really heard of God. If they are thoughtful people they can discover certain aspects of God's law by studying society and their own lives. Because of the incredible gifts of reason and conscience everyone can discover to some extent the natural law written on our hearts. How else could you explain the fact that there are certain laws or societal rules which transcend culture and religion or time.
There are some who have heard God's law and God's plan but just don't believe it. They have just not been convinced. They prefer to find their own way in a sea of opinions and beliefs often changing direction along the way.
There are some who have heard God's law and believe it but just don't want to follow it. The glamor and the lure of sin just are too enticing to them. They convince themselves that they know what God wants from them and someday they will be a better person but for now.... they want to seize the day. The big danger for these people is that as they act contrary to God's law they are developing patterns of behavior which will later be very difficult to change. Also as they follow their will and not God's law they risk hurting others along their journey. Unfortunate indeed
St. Paul speaks today about people like himself who want to do what is right but just can't seem to do. Their freedom is compromised. Try as they might their intentions are good but they fall and fall and fall again and again. People in this circumstance must place their trust in the loving mercy of God and never give up.
Finally there are those who know God's law and follow it. While their lives are not always easy... they are often filled with a profound peace which can only flow from a deep conviction. They are often a very positive in the lives of people around them. Blest are they indeed.
I guess the question we have to ask ourselves is where do we fall ?
PS as you can see this is definitely a work in progress.